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Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN, Nurse Practitioner
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Experience:  Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner
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Can anyone tell me why my skull would be shrinking to fast

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Can anyone tell me why my skull would be shrinking to fast? My Dr. said it was he didn't know why
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 6 years ago.



Thank you for writing in today. I want to provide you with the best possible information; therefore, I do need to clarify something. Rather than the skull (bones), do you mean that your provider said your brain is shrinking? Did you have a CT scan or MRI? If so, why was it ordered? Were you having symptoms? Please let me know. Lisa

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I had both CT and MRI because of headaches. He said it was migraine but the front of my skull was shrinking too fast.
Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for responding. What he is talking about is most likely frontal and possibly temporal lobe atrophy. Just as the rest of the body changes with age, the brain too changes as we age. With age, the brain can have some natural atrophy (shrinkage); however, when a patient has an accelerated presentation of atrophy, certain underlying conditions are considered. For example, any history of alcoholism, stroke, traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, and multiple sclerosis are considered. Also, any chronic or history of infectious diseases with a potential for neurological sequelae, such as HIV or encephalitis are considered. However, the cause is not always well understood. A family history of alzheimer's or dementia is also considered. Sometimes people with cerebral atrophy can have a genetic predisposition. At this point, you will likely be referred to a neurologist for more specialized consultation. This may not be too concerning at this point, as long as you aren't demonstrating any dementia type of symptoms. I hope this helps. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please let me know. Lisa

Edited by Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN on 11/15/2009 at 11:45 PM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
lisa the doctor i saw was a neurologist and he said since i have none of the above u were mentioning that hes not sure why my skull in front would be shrinking already since i am 50. but i do have ra, fibromyalgia, acid refllux, austio arthritis, asthma, thyroids, and poor bones and cant have milk anad miilk products im lactose tolerent ty jen
Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 6 years ago.
As I mentioned, sometimes they never figure out why this is happening. They may not know why this is happening to you. As for your diagnosis, sometimes severe rheumatoid arthritis can cause some cerebral vasculitis and atrophy. However, this isn't always the case with rheumatoid arthritis. Also, I suspect your neurologist has considered your past medical history anyway. This may not be too concerning. As long as you aren't having any problems with dementia type symptoms, periodic monitoring may be all that is necessary. Lisa
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

thank u so much exactly what does dementia type symptoms mean


Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for responding. First of all, based on this information, I assume that what you mean by skull shrinkage is likely some cerebral atrophy noted on the scan. Therefore, I would recommend clarifying this with your neurologist. I'm sure your provider would be happy to discuss it. I am doubtful that this is actual skull (bone) shrinkage, which is why I suspect this is actually atrophy that was noted. Now, as for dementia type symptoms, these would be memory problems and/or personality changes. Even if you do have some atrophy, there is no guarantee that there will be any problems in these areas. Lisa
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